Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Grand Jury Seated in Perry Veto Threat - Perry Lawyers-Up

A Travis County Grand Jury was empaneled on April 14 to hear evidence in TPJ's criminal complaint alleging that Governor Perry abused his authority when he threatened to veto the budget of the Travis Country Public Integrity Unit. Perry also announced he has retained a high-profile criminal defense attorney to represent him in the matter.

Judge Seats Grand Jury in Perry Probe, Houston Chronicle.
Perry Hires Austin Lawyer for Criminal Inquiry Into Veto Threat, Austin-American Statesman.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Editorial: Perry veto investigation on right track

The Austin-American Statesman Editorial Board expressed its support for the seriousness with which the special prosecutor is taking his investigation of Perry's conduct. The investigation was triggered by a formal complaint filed by TPJ alleging the Governor's threats to the veto the funding of the Travis County Public Integrity Unit violated state law.

Read the full Statesman editorial.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Lobby Watch:
Math Geniuses May Solve Lawsuit-Hypocrisy Problem

One of Texans for Lawsuit Reform's big new contributors co-founded Houston's Quantlab, which filed state and federal lawsuits against two math whizzes who wrote algorithms to drive the company's high-speed securities trades. Is there a mathematical solution to explain the tort-reformers' hypocrisy?

Grab your slide rule and test Lobby Watch's bold hypothesis.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Special Prosecutor Likely to Seek Indictments in Perry Veto Threat

Special Prosecutor Michael McCrum suggests that he will soon seek indictments related to Governor Perry’s threats to veto funds for the Travis County District Attorney's Public Integrity Unit. A judge assigned McCrum to investigate a TPJ complaint alleging that the gubernatorial threats broke state laws.

McCrum's comments were first reported by Tony Plohetski in the Austin-American Statesman.
Special prosecutor looking into Perry veto of Integrity Unit funding is "very concerned."

Read TPJ's June 14, 2013 complaint against Governor Perry.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Reform Groups Criticize McCutcheon Ruling

U.S. Supreme Court Decision Removes $123,200 Overall Limit on Contributions to Federal Candidates & PACS

“The McCutcheon ruling confirms that the Robert’s Court is intent on returning to the days when politics and government were the sole domain of the rich,” said Craig McDonald, Director, Texans for Public Justice.

“This Court is fine with the notion that the size of one's wallet determines the strength of one's political influence. To this Court, it's "one dollar, one vote" instead of ‘one person, one vote,’” statement by Joanne Richards, President Common Ground for Texas.

"The ‘pay for play’ decision by the Supreme Court has dimmed our democracy. The gates are fully open for the utra-rich to buy those who were once considered the representatives of the people,” Liz Wally, Clean Elections Texas Executive Director.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Lobby Watch: Might Trumps Property Rights in Energy Industry

A Houston billionaire & University of Texas regent who underwrites Texas Republican candidates is trying to forcibly frack the properties of four Pennsylvania landowners against their will. Does the Texas Republican Party's exaltation of the sanctity of private property endow little people with the right to stand in the way of billionaires?

Read more in Lobby Watch.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Lobby Watch: Huffines Consults with Wire Tapper and his "Hooker"

Top consultants that tea-partier Don Huffines used to knock out a powerful Texas senator are conservative media celebrities best known for a botched political wiretapping and a famous hooker impersonation.

Only in Texas. Only in the new Lobby Watch..

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Texas Observer: The Upside Down World View of Payday Lenders

A revolving-door lobbyist for the payday loan industry attacked Texas consumer groups for blocking predatory-loan reforms in a March 15 Galveston News opinion piece. The Texas Observer’s Forrest Wilder does a good job of placing the payday industry’s worldview on a more stable axis.

Read Forrest Wilder's article at the Texas Observer.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Collins: Where are the Texas Oligarchs?

NY Times columnist Gail Collins muses on oligarchy. She asks TPJ where are the Texas oligarchs? Read 'Billion Dollar Babies' at the NY Times.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Lobby Watch: Rube-TLR Lawmakers Sue Ponzi Schemer

The four rube lawmakers who got scammed in a 'Christian' Ponzi scheme played Texans for Lawsuit Reform (TLR) for a chump. Rather than take their losses like men, the TLR-championed legislators filed a plaintiff lawsuit.

Read the Lobby Watch.